The Richmond Register

Local News

September 20, 2012

Trial dates set in three homicides

Family, friends of victims crowd courtroom at hearings

RICHMOND — The audience was awash in white, neon-green and yellow T-shirts Wednesday afternoon as the family members and friends of three homicide victims attended court hearings for people accused of being responsible for those deaths.

Besides sharing the pain of a loved one’s violent death and T-shirts emblazoned with the victims’ photos, the audience also was linked by the fact one man — 28-year-old Matthew Denholm — has been accused of murdering all three people.

Judges Jean Chenault Logue and William Clouse set trial dates well into 2013 for both cases.

Denholm and his co-defendant, Patrick Keene, 26, accused of killing Sonsaray “Sonsi” Warford,  and Charles “Chew” Walker in June 2010, are set to be tried Aug. 12. The case will last at least two weeks, according to both the prosecutors and defense attorneys.

“Aug. 12 would allow us two to three weeks without any interruptions from other court activity,” Judge Logue said.

According to preliminary hearing testimony from Richmond Police Detective William O’Donnell, Denholm and Keene, who are both Army war veterans, were hired to kill Walker because he allegedly stole money from a local drug dealer. Warford was Walker’s girlfriend, and he was at her home when Keene and Denholm came for Walker.

O’Donnell testified that Keene and Denholm shot and stabbed the couple, who were both 30 years old when they died. They were buried in a field off Tates Creek Road, O’Donnell said.

Using information obtained in a federal drug-trafficking case, the police found the couple’s bodies in March, 21 months after they had been reported missing by family members.

Judge Logue asked attorneys when the bodies could be released to their families. Commonwealth’s Attorney David Smith said the Kentucky State Police Lab was still working to establish DNA profiles on the remains.

A status hearing has been set in the case for 1:30 p.m. Jan. 16.

Zackary Flower’s case

In the next case’s hearing, Matthew Denholm was joined by his brother, Ryan Denholm, 31, along with Sherry Bratten, 32, and Randall Burgess Jr., 18.

When the four defendants walked into the courtroom, Laurie Flower held up a large picture of her son, Zackary Flower. Several of the defendants glanced more than once at the photograph.

Flower and her husband, Mark, have traveled from their home in Lynchburg, Va., more than once to attend court hearings. Other family members and friends also have traveled from several other distant states to be present for the proceedings.

Judge Clouse set the trial in that case to start July 8, and it is expected to take two weeks.

Matthew Denholm is accused of entering the Berea apartment of Flower, 25, and Kevin Price on Nov. 21 and shooting the roommates, killing Flower. Price was severely injured during the incident.

Flower, Price and Denholm had been involved in a confrontation the previous night, according to the Berea police.

Matthew Denholm, accompanied by his brother Ryan and Bratten, Ryan’s girlfriend, then left Madison County after the shooting and were tracked to Louisville where they were arrested later that day, the police reported.

Ryan Denholm is accused of providing his brother with the deer rifle used in the shooting and is charged with murder. Bratten and Burgess, who police say allowed his car to be used to commit the killing, have been each been charged with facilitation to commit murder.

Commonwealth's Attorney David Smith said he has not yet made a decision on whether to seek the death penalty in either the Flower case or the Warford and Walker double-homicide case.

1
Text Only
Local News
  • Legislature passes road-spending plan

    Kentucky House and Senate lawmakers agreed Tuesday to a $4.1 billion road-spending plan on the legislature’s final day, avoiding an expensive special session.
    The plan includes $5.2 billion worth of projects throughout the state. But as much as 25 percent of that money will not be spent. Lawmakers said they would like to include a cushion in case some projects are delayed because of environmental concerns or problems acquiring land.

    April 16, 2014

  • 4-16 CMMShealthfair5.jpg Health fairs cover contemporary teenage topics

    Berea Community High School health students coordinated their first all-day health fair in November that was catered to elementary students.

    But their spring fair Monday handled more mature issues that targeted the middle and high school crowd, said health teacher Cathy Jones.

    April 16, 2014 13 Photos

  • 4-16 Lisa Begley.jpg Police: Woman drove through storage business gate

    Richmond police arrested a Lexington woman Monday night after the property manager at Main Street Storage said she repeatedly drove her vehicle into a gate and fence at the 455 E. Main St. business.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Local jobless rate for 2013 same as 2012

    Madison was one of 12 Kentucky counties with a 2013 jobless rate unchanged from the previous year, according to statistics released Tuesday.

    Still, only four counties – Woodford, 6.1; Fayette and Oldham, 6.5; and Scott, 6.7 – had jobless rates better than Madison’s 6.8 percent.

    April 16, 2014

  • Danville officials table fairness ordinance

    City officials in Danville have tabled an anti-discrimination proposal.
    The Advocate-Messenger reports that the move on Monday came after questions were raised about its legality and suggestions were made for changes.

    April 15, 2014

  • Grimes outpaces McConnell in first quarter

    Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes has again outpaced her likely Republican general election opponent, incumbent Mitch McConnell, in fundraising during the first quarter — but she remains well behind McConnell in total fundraising and cash on hand.

    April 15, 2014

  • $250,000 wrecker stolen

    A representative of Barger’s Wrecking Service, North Porter Drive, reported to Richmond police Sunday that a black, 1996 Peterbilt wrecker with company logos on it was stolen from the business’ parking lot. The wrecker is valued at $250,000, according to the police report.

    April 15, 2014

  • Owner requests business zoning for corner of West Main and Tates Creek

    The owner of three lots at the corner of West Main Street and Tates Creek Avenue wants the property rezoned from R-1B (Single-family Residential) to B-1 (Neighborhood Business).

    April 14, 2014

  • Regents approve smoke-free campus policy

    The Eastern Kentucky University Board of Regents on Monday approved a tobacco-free campus policy and set 2014-15 rates for tuition, housing and meal plans.

    Effective June 1, the use of tobacco on all property that is owned, leased, occupied or controlled by the university will be prohibited.

    April 14, 2014

  • 4.15 Eggstravaganza 1.jpg Easter bunny's ‛eggbeater’ will fly eggs to Richmond

    Who knew the Easter bunny could fly?

    Skeptics can come to the Easter Eggstravaganza in Richmond’s Irvine-McDowell Park on Saturday to see for themselves. However, the bunny still doesn’t fly in bad weather. But on Monday, temperatures in the 60s with partly cloudy skies were predicted for Saturday.

    April 14, 2014 1 Photo

AP Video
Tributes Mark Boston Bombing Anniversary Raw: Kan. Shooting Suspect Faces Judge US Supports Ukraine's Efforts to Calm Tensions Suspect in Kansas Shootings Faces Murder Charges Ukraine: Military Recaptures Eastern Airport Raw: Storm Topples RVs Near Miss. Gulf Coast NASA Showcases Lunar Eclipse Pistorius Cries During Final Cross-Examination The Boston Marathon Bombing: One Year Later Michael Phelps Set to Come Out of Retirement First Women Move to Army Platoon Artillery Jobs Sex Offenders Charged in Serial Killings Police: Woman Stored Dead Babies in Garage OC Serial Murder Suspects May Have More Victims Family: 2 Shot in Head at Kan. Jewish Center Raw: Horse Jumping Inspires 'Bunny Hop' After Attack, Officials Kill 5 Bears in Florida Popular Science Honors Year's Top Inventions ND Oil Boom Attracting Drug Traffickers
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Poll

Should the Richmond City Commission stop rezoning property to allow construction of apartments?

Yes.
No
     View Results